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MySQL Ends Enterprise Server Source Tarballs 413

Posted by Zonk
from the new-tactic-in-open-sorcery dept.
vboulytchev writes "The folks at MySQL has quietly announced that it will no longer be distributing the MySQL Enterprise Server source as a tarball. It's been about a year since the split between the paid and free versions of the database project. The Enterprise Server code is still under the GNU General Public License (GPL), and as a result MySQL appears to be making it harder for non-customers to access the source code. 'One of the things that many users worry about is whether they're getting an inferior version of MySQL by using the Community version. Urlocker says that MySQL "wants to make sure the Community version is rock solid," but admitted that the company has introduced features into the Community edition of the software that "[weren't] as robust as we thought, and created some instabilities." Because of that, the company is revising its policies about when features go into the Community releases.'" Update: 08/10 04:56 GMT by CN :While it is slightly harder to get, the source isn't closed by any means, so I updated the title to reflect that.
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MySQL Ends Enterprise Server Source Tarballs

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:08PM (#20175689)
    MySQL announced plans for a new BitTorrent based distributed backend.
    • Re:In related news (Score:5, Interesting)

      by ShieldW0lf (601553) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:19PM (#20175855) Journal
      Wow...

      The same guys who lied about the suitability of their code for various purposes from day one

      The same guys who maintained that ACID was unimportant until the very moment they had it

      The same guys who have been setting this up for years with their Project Mayo/DivX Networks style licensing/contribution scheme

      You mean they actually went ahead and tried to use shady shenanigans to force developers who have no need for anything from their organization whatsoever beyond a copy of the community developed codebase to pay for access to the codebase?

      Wow. What a surprise.

      I made a decision to give preference to PostgreSQL over MySQL in my developments... not because of the technical merits involved, but because of the repeatedly demonstrated lack of trustworthiness of the MySQL team.

      I didn't expect to see my decision validated in such a rapid and undeniable fashion though.

      Just goes to show... technical skill is no substitute for good character or lack thereof.
    • Re:In related news (Score:4, Informative)

      by utopianfiat (774016) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:47PM (#20176241) Journal
      fuck you zonk!
      no, I've had enough of your bullshit! take this goddamn article down right fucking now and change the title you worthless fucking excuse for a yellow journalist! For fucksake you READ the goddamn article before you post it, I HOPE.
      Fucking immune from moderation troll-assed motherfucker, I will sacrifice my "excellent" karma to bring you down!
      • Say what? (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Kadin2048 (468275) *

        fuck you zonk!
        no, I've had enough of your bullshit! take this goddamn article down right fucking now and change the title you worthless fucking excuse for a yellow journalist! For fucksake you READ the goddamn article before you post it, I HOPE.
        Fucking immune from moderation troll-assed motherfucker, I will sacrifice my "excellent" karma to bring you down!
        Anyone want to clue me in on what's going on there? And what all the yelling is about?
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by queequeg1 (180099)
        I'm still trying to wade through the toe-dipping and hedging in the parent post. Can someone please tell me how Utopianfiat really feels about Zonk?
      • Re:In related news (Score:5, Informative)

        by wwahammy (765566) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @08:57PM (#20177915)
        While the response is a bit... over the top, the sentiment is understandable. MySQL is not closing off its source. It's just choosing not to distribute the source code for one version of its product in one way. It doesn't violate the GPL in any way and if you still really want the source you can get it from their repository.

        Zonk's title isn't even remotely related to the reality of the situation. If I could mod him down, I sure would.
        • Re:In related news (Score:5, Insightful)

          by kripkenstein (913150) on Friday August 10, 2007 @12:35AM (#20179217) Homepage

          MySQL is not closing off its source. It's just choosing not to distribute the source code for one version of its product in one way. It doesn't violate the GPL in any way and if you still really want the source you can get it from their repository.
          Thank you for that accurate summary of the situation.

          Thing is, many people don't understand the GPL. The GPL never said 'you must distribute your source code to everyone'... you can, for example, make private changes and never give them out. In fact, this is explicitly given as an example of an important freedom by Stallman, Moglen, etc. Similarly, you have the freedom to make changes and give them to only a few people; this is exactly what MySQL are doing. Now, the people that do receive the code are free to further distribute it, according to the GPL, and I am sure we will see the code in some manner (compare to CentOS). But MySQL are well within their legal (and moral) rights to have only part of their GPLed code available on their servers in tarball format for anonymous download.

          To attack MySQL about this is very unfair.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by CarpetShark (865376)

            Thing is, many people don't understand the GPL. The GPL never said 'you must distribute your source code to everyone'... you can, for example, make private changes and never give them out. In fact, this is explicitly given as an example of an important freedom by Stallman, Moglen, etc. Similarly, you have the freedom to make changes and give them to only a few people; this is exactly what MySQL are doing. Now, the people that do receive the code are free to further distribute it, according to the GPL, and I

  • After Bittorrent yesterday is this a trend that we should be worried about, or really just 2 separate instances?
    • by tgatliff (311583)
      Why do I get the feeling that there will be a Torrent for MySQL Enterprise Server source? :-)
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by AvitarX (172628)
        Not going to happen.

        According to the summary anyway, it will still be legal to distribute. So it won't end up as a torrent.
    • Whatever THEY want (Score:5, Insightful)

      by El Lobo (994537) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:59PM (#20176399)
      Whatever it is, they are in their perfect rights to do what they want with THEIR code.

      This is actually the tendence that worries me. These days many people (thankfully not everybody) think they have the RIGHT to get everything for free. One bitches because product X is not Open Source (Ohh what a crime!!!). The other bitches because X (which VERY GENEROUSLY was giving many years of hard work to people who don't even write a line of code) is taking their hard work back for Y reasons (yes, making a buck for many years of hard work is not a bad thing , you know)

      Another funny thing: I was talking to a man here at work. The man is a a rabious defender of OS. He wouldn't touch a non- OS program, he almost cried when MS made a deal with Novell, he screams how much he hates Photoshop and how great Gimp is (just because is OS)... And guess what? He develops a very good backup solution for databases and he takes good money for it. He was having some difficulties adding features. Knowing how good of an OS supporter he was I had the nerve to suggest to him to open the source of his program. ARE YOU FUCKING MAD?- he said. DO YOU KNOW HOW HARD I WORK FOR THIS SHIT? AND I WOULD GIVE IT TO THE DOGS?....

      Moral of the story. If you work hard for your work and wnat to share , so be it. If you want to get your work back iand this is posible, just do it. You have the right. people will bitch, people will call you a shit, people will hate you... And yet, the majority of them won't share a shit either giving the oportunity.

      Making money is not a crime folks....

      • not quite (Score:5, Informative)

        by infonography (566403) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @06:43PM (#20176847) Homepage
        The issue isn't that they are keeping what they made. They didn't make it all since they used stuff others had contributed under a certain condition. That being Open Source. The open source model is that you let others help you build the software. To close the source they would have to comb back through the contributions of other people over the years and take out all OS code that is what they didn't pay for in-house. Otherwise they would have to rewrite a whole new system from scratch and walk away from the MySQL code base as it stands.

        It's like getting divorced and your ex gets only the second floor and the garage.
        • Re:not quite (Score:4, Insightful)

          by jadavis (473492) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @11:27PM (#20178811)
          To close the source they would have to comb back through the contributions of other people over the years and take out all OS code that is what they didn't pay for in-house.

          But MySQL AB owns the copyright on all the code, regardless of the contributor, correct? That means they can close the source, and they don't have to ask anyone or comb anything.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Look at ME! I'm MySQL! I'm a "real database!"
  • Cha-Ching (Score:2, Interesting)

    by happy_place (632005)
    I don't suppose this is an attempt to get more money?
  • Yay! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Bluesman (104513) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:11PM (#20175737) Homepage
    Can we all just switch to Postgres now?

    Cheap web hosting, I'm looking at you...
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by scribblej (195445)
      You can get a VPS for $10 a month, put postgresql on it yourself. It is what I do. I don't know what you consider cheap but $10/month isn't a burden over here.

      • by nuzak (959558)
        You can get shared hosting for $10/month. Where are you finding VPS's for that price?
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      Can we all just switch to Postgres now?

      I hope so. Though Postgres needs serious work in the n00b friendly area.

      Cheap web hosting, I'm looking at you...

      TronicTech [tronictech.com]. They offer Postgres, MySQL, Ruby on Rails, PHP, Perl, Python, ssh, MailMan, subdomains/multiple host names (each can have different content), etc with plans starting at $5.95/mo. I've been using the $5.95/mo plan for about two years now and have been very happy with it.

  • by Zontar The Mindless (9002) <plasticfish@info.gmail@com> on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:13PM (#20175775)
    http://mysql.bkbits.net/ [bkbits.net] is still there, and AFAIK it isn't going away anytime soon.
    • by tgatliff (311583)
      Exactly.. They also did not change their GPL license because they know what it would mean... Meaning, if MySQL AB changed their license to a closed source format people would just fork the last version that was open, which is the beautiful thing about GPL. In BitTorrents case, why do we even care what the original creator of torrents are doing?

      The real purpose of their move was to try to create the perception that their paid offering has more value than their free version to business people. Meaning, if I
  • ... company is obviously designed to move people to buy the product that gives them more income.
    This sounds just like the FUD that microsoft guy made by "admitting" that XP has problems in the hopes that people will move to vista.
    I think it's best to simply ignore the marketing people. There are no "instabilities" in the stable community version above and beyond the normal cycle of bugs and bugfixes you see in any software.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:17PM (#20175813)
    MySQL versions 5.0.38 to 5.0.45 have had such major bugs that they have rendered themselves useless for a huge range of applications. Applications that use dates, or ones that expect the database to *NOT* insert random NULL values in a group by query.

    I mean, even the most basic test suite would have easily caught these.

    Here are just a few of the major ones:
    Bug #28336 [mysql.com]
    Bug #28936 [mysql.com]
  • by syousef (465911)
    Let me be the first to suggest UseToBeMySQL or NowItsNotYourSQL. Or better yet SoldOutMySQL. SQLMoneyWhore might not fly but then again offensive names don't seem to be a problem with open source (I'm thinking of GIMP).
    • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:20PM (#20175883)

      Since it's currently in a state after being MySQL, I propose we confuse everybody by calling it PostMySQL.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by nuzak (959558)
      How about TheirSQL?

      Or more descriptively, NotSQL? That one's almost a Godwin.
    • by Lumpy (12016)
      No.. fork it and call it OurSQL.

      and GIMP is not offensive enough, try showing how you discovered that the network needed redesign because you used a program called Etherape to map it for the PHB's. they for some reason see RAPE in it instead of APE.

      Problem is 90% of all forks die unless the fork is created by a large portion of the original devs or supporting devs.
  • by adnonsense (826530) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:18PM (#20175829) Homepage Journal
    My take: while MySQL has improved technically in leaps and bounds over the last couple of years, stuff like this (or having its transactional backends bought out from under it by Oracle) makes it increasingly difficult for me to recommend it as a business proposition to my clients. Meanwhile PostgreSQL continues to get the job done for the majority of my projects; I have a network of professionals who support it competently; and having followed the project since 2001 or so, I'm confident it's not going anywhere but forwards.
    • by jez9999 (618189)
      Yeah, could you please somehow persuade the people at cPanel to get it installed by default on a new server? It's an absolute bitch to use with cPanel unfortunately, because their software is tailor-made to work with one of 2 version of mySQL. :-S
      • by OverlordQ (264228)
        No offense, but I doubt the people that need to use cPanel could figure out how to use Postgres.
  • Yes, it's legal (Score:4, Informative)

    by Carnildo (712617) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:19PM (#20175847) Homepage Journal
    Before anyone bitches about it, this is perfectly legal. The GPL only requires you to provide source code to people who you also provide the compiled software to. You just can't restrict what they in turn do with the source code, which is why most GPL developers make the source code available to everyone and their dog.
  • This is no big deal. (Score:5, Informative)

    by bmo (77928) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:19PM (#20175865)
    It's right in keeping with the GPL. The GPL doesn't say "you have to give the source to all and sundry." No, they just have to give the source code to those they gave the binaries to, i.e., their paying customers.

    The work-around for the community is hinted at here:

    "Though MySQL AB will not be distributing the source tarball, Urlocker says that MySQL isn't going to try to stop distribution of Enterprise Server source by others. "If somebody wants to, that's fine. People can distribute it.... "

    Getting the source code as a tarball on a public server for everyone is an intellectual exercize for the reader.

    I read this as a "We're not going to be hosting for leeches. You want a public server, set your own up"

    --
    BMO
    • Yes. The title of this article really was misleading, especially with that one about BitTorrent the other day - saying that they're "closing off" their source makes it sound like they were planning on going fully closed-source.
    • by Todd Knarr (15451) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:58PM (#20176387) Homepage

      Not technically correct. They can limit giving the source code to only their customers if and only if they provide the source code along with the binaries. If they provide the source code seperately, then the GPL requires them to offer the source code to any third party that asks for it for at least 3 years from their last binary distribution. This is because any party who receives the binary is entitled to the source even if they didn't get it directly from MySQL AB.

      • by bmo (77928) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @06:14PM (#20176569)
        "This is because any party who receives the binary is entitled to the source even if they didn't get it directly from MySQL AB."

        And you, Sir, are not entirely correct. I cannot bend over MySQL AB by giving people binaries of MySQL. If you get binaries from me, then *I* must offer the source code *not* MySQL. If MySQL AB no longer offers source to all comers, then it's *my* problem, not theirs.

        From GPL V2 (which is what MySQL is using currently)

        "b) Accompany it with a written offer, valid for at least three years, to give any third party, for a charge no more than your cost of physically performing source distribution, a complete machine-readable copy of the corresponding source code, to be distributed under the terms of Sections 1 and 2 above on a medium customarily used for software interchange; or,"

        If I'm distributing version 2 GPLed MySQL, that clause is talking to _me_ and not MySQL AB. The "c" clause gives me an out if I'm noncommercial and I can point to SourceForge or a public server offering MySQL source.

        --
        BMO
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Eivind Eklund (5161)
          As I read it, that clause is talking to BOTH of you. Both you and MySQL have to do it. "Any third party", it says. Not even just those that have the binary, *any* third party.

          Eivind.

  • ....is on PostgreSQL [blogs.com]. Good stuff!
  • by Lumpy (12016) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:33PM (#20176063) Homepage
    Lots of OSS projects use Mysql. If they want to take their ball and go home, so bet it. we can take a tarball and create OurSQL.

    Come on people this is what OSS is all about. forking and starting a new project because the current project leaders became poopwads.
  • by erroneus (253617) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:37PM (#20176119) Homepage
    A MySQL fork: "OurSQL" or something like that

    or

    A general shift to PostgreSQL... seems a lot of people are favoring that route.

    I don't care which way it goes, the community will respond and MySQL will become irrelevant.
  • "Fork you!"

    Really, it's that simple when you have GPL software.
  • ...the community version as a test bed for the enterprise version, which in that case it becomes clear that there is an imbalance or dismissal of the value of the community users, an abuse if you will.

    The GPL was intended to remove such abuses. The GPL v3 is intended to do the same thing but in consideration of the fraud of software patents. But the point is clear, the GPL in general is to prevent abuses.

    On the slip side, there is nothing preventing someone who has access to the enterprise version from maki
  • by MattW (97290) <matt@ender.com> on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:51PM (#20176307) Homepage
    By discouraging people from getting and using the Enterprise version, I feel less and less safe deploying it myself. Less users = less chances to catch problems. Less code = less review = less security.

    I'm about to deploy 4 MySQL servers for some serious volume and was strongly considering buying into an enterprise package, largely on the strength of their monitoring tool, but now I'm seriously thinking it's time to try Postgres.
  • Inferior version (Score:3, Informative)

    by bl8n8r (649187) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:53PM (#20176345)
    "One of the things that many users worry about is whether they're getting an
    inferior version of MySQL by using the Community version."

    They already have SCO, how much more inferior can they get.
    http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=05/09/04/173022 5 [slashdot.org]
  • by nurb432 (527695) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @05:55PM (#20176357) Homepage Journal
    I dont think anyone is really suprised.

    PostgreSQL is still free and more powerful anyway so no great loss.
  • by icepick72 (834363) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @06:23PM (#20176669)
    It's interesting to see how the community often openly promotes and vehemently defends an "open" piece of software but if the software starts to "close" then all the problems start coming out and suddenly it's a piece of @#$! The robustness of software doesn't change with a philosophy. It's all the in marketing. I mean if MySql were still open then we'd see posts comparing it against Microsoft's software. Now for "some reason" they're equivalent in the garbage bin. I will remember this indeed.
  • by kilodelta (843627) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @08:06PM (#20177499) Homepage
    From what I can tell, the only real differences between Enterprise and Community is support. We run community version for major production databases with no issues whatsoever.

    And we're not the only ones doing so. MySQL had really better re-think the whole thing, whats the point of offering Enterprise when 90% of shops are going to go with the free product.
  • by liftphreaker (972707) on Thursday August 09, 2007 @09:04PM (#20177957)
    The last thing you want to hear about a DBMS is this line from MySQL: "the company has introduced features into the Community edition of the software that "[weren't] as robust as we thought, and created some instabilities"

    This, among other reasons, is why we switched to Postgresql some years ago. MySQL was (is?) not even ANSI SQL compliant, at least when we were struggling with it.
  • by theolein (316044) on Friday August 10, 2007 @04:14AM (#20180273) Journal
    The pressure on mysql to constantly offer new features, instead of focusing on mysql's strengths, which is highspeed, a decent group of features and simplicity to maintain and operate is going to cost mysql in the long run. This is only the start. The new features in mysql 5+ such as stored procedures, triggers, functions etc are very poorly implemented and come nowhere near the full implementations of databases like Oracle and Postgresql. The result is that DBAs and developers who like mysql for its easy maintenance and speed end up being disillusioned when problems start cropping up.

    I don't think many places would switch to Postgresql, since the administration side is more complex and therefore more costly, but I can see shops weighing the pros and cons of switching to postgresql, since that DB has an excellent reputation.
  • by petrus4 (213815) on Friday August 10, 2007 @08:01AM (#20181521) Homepage Journal
    While I'm not doing database stuff currently, last time I was a year or two ago, I actually saw this coming and opted for Postgres rather than MySQL.

    Postgres is a fantastic project. It's very solid, can handle huge transaction/request loads, has concurrent locking etc, from memory supports a large number of different datatypes, and is also very configurable. Even better, it's under what is my own favourite license, the BSD license...so you can do pretty much whatever you want with it.

    MySQL will probably continue to have its' place, with people who need the things they're charging for, (presumably support options etc) and I wish the project well.

    However, for people like me who don't have a lot of money, MySQL ceased being an entirely legally safe option a while ago.

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